Home>Discussions>ELECTRICAL & LIGHTING>Why are so many of my light bulbs burning out all of a sudden?
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Barb W
Why are so many of my light bulbs burning out all of a sudden?

In the past couple weeks I've had at least 8 light bulbs burn out. Two of them are 3-way lamp bulbs and only the middle range will light now. The rest of the bulbs are in fixtures that are in the cold. Two inside the garage and the others in exterior wall sconces. All are incandescent. Should I be worrying about an electrical problem somewhere in my house? Or perhaps, is it just dumb luck that these bulbs are all old enough to give up at the same time?

A. Spruce
Re: Why are so many of my light bulbs burning out all of a sudden?

Probably more to do with the cold and dumb luck than a problem if this is the first time the bulbs have burned out. If this is a recurrent and frequent problem, then yes, it's likely there is a problem somewhere along the line.

Are all these lights on the same circuit? If so, it is likely a loose electrical connection that can be anywhere between the circuit breaker in the main panel and the light bulbs themselves. Normal use can cause expansion and contraction of the wiring and loosen connections. Exterior fixtures are prone to moisture, dust, dirt, and cobwebs, not to mention bugs. All these things can cause corrosion and fouling of the fixture. The fix would be to tighten all connections and clean the fixtures. If you are not handy or comfortable with dealing with electrical problems, then hire a professional to do it for you.

Lastly would be using cheap, off brand bulbs. These do not last as long as Phillips or Sylvania brand bulbs. Name brands may be a bit more expensive, but they usually give you substantially better and longer service life.

Fencepost
Re: Why are so many of my light bulbs burning out all of a sudden?

Have you noticed the bulbs flickering lately? This can indicate a wiring problem (loose connection) or a heavy load starting and stopping.

I've seen bulbs flicker when heavy equipment such as air compressors and welders are operating. Have you or neighbor recently acquired some new shop equipment?

BigWalt
Re: Why are so many of my light bulbs burning out all of a sudden?

I have similiar situation....

Mine was weather related. Cold, damp or dry weather can cause havoc on bulbs.:mad:

Vern Smith
Re: Why are so many of my light bulbs burning out all of a sudden?

Just a thought, but do any of your lights dim in some parts of your house while others get brighter? That's an indication of a bad neutral connection on you service. It can fry things pretty quickly. The power company should be able to tell you if there's a problem.

gasman63
RE: Receesed lights keep burning out after two or three weeks

We have four can lights in our great room and five can lights in our kitchen, Each set is on its own circuit each room is controlled by three-way switches. The lights seem to burn out when the lights are turned on. The lights seem to last just two or three weeks and its always a different light that burns out.
We are useing good quality bulbs.

Help!

A. Spruce
Re: Receesed lights keep burning out after two or three weeks
gasman63 wrote:

We have four can lights in our great room and five can lights in our kitchen, Each set is on its own circuit each room is controlled by three-way switches. The lights seem to burn out when the lights are turned on. The lights seem to last just two or three weeks and its always a different light that burns out.
We are useing good quality bulbs.

Help!

It is likely a bad/loose connection somewhere that is arcing when the switches are activated. Start at the fixtures with a loose bulb, then check every connection all the way back to the breaker panel.

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